What Open Standards means ?
A lot of debates nowadays for a common definition of Open
Standards (IGF, EC, etc).
Can W3C/ERCIM and ETSI agree on some principles
- Transparent process
- Open participation
- Technical Consensus
- Running code
- Free and Persistent Specification
- IPR Policy, in relation to Open Source in particular
- due process is public (e.g. W3C Process, ETSI)
- all technical discussions are archived online (e.g. HTML)
- transparency is different than confidentiality
- all technical meetings are minuted are referencable in decision
- if you have nothing to do with the decision, it doesn't have to be
transparent to you.
- reality: transparency is subjective
- anybody can participate
- and everybody does: multi-stakeholder: industry,
individual, public, government bodies, academia, on a worldwide scale
are suitable for those situations where dialogue is possible, where
listening, reconciling interests, and integrating views into joint
solution strategies seems appropriate and within reach.
Open Participation for individuals
- W3C WGs decide on their openess level for their live discussions (e.g.
HTML, WAI groups are open)
- Each WG has an obligation of periodic public
review/reply (at all stages)
- Non member "Invited Experts" are always welcome.
- This is also a guarantee of transparency.
- consensus defined
in the process
- guaranteed fairness
- neutral hosting of the organization
- equal weight for each participant
- no formal voting, everybody has to convert everybody
- testing for relevance, e.g. analysis of the needs, including
requirements phase, e.g. accessibility, multi-linguism
- testing for relevance once the specs is finished: running code,
interop, validation, implementation
- prevalence of end-user tools (e.g. HTML validator.w3.org)
- online errata maintenance, persistent URL
- Tim Berners-Lee designed and implemented a free Web, both Open Source
and Open Standard compliant at once (HTTP, HTML, URL, first server, first
- W3C promotes the development of Web standards implemented by Open
Source, and encourage product competition as well.
- Our tool for that purpose: the W3C Patent
Policy (since 2003), which addresses more than just royalties issues
(e.g. RF vs. RAND)